It’s as if the natural world realizes how much I don’t want to see summer fading and has decided to delight me in unexpected ways. This week, it has been with birds.
A pair of humming birds is still lingering around the feeder and Rose of Sharon. They are so tame that I share the porch with them every morning and evening; they enjoy nectar and sugar water, while I enjoy a cup or two of Mama Mocha’s coffee.
My smallest dog, Grimm, wakes up earlier than the rest of us and bats at his crate door, asking to be taken outside a little after daybreak. Usually, I am half-asleep while I wait for him to finish his outdoor business and come running back to me as fast as a greyhound because he knows the routine: he’ll get to go back to sleep in the big bed with Heathcliff and me until my alarm goes off.
One morning this past week, while I was outdoors, sleepily waiting for him, I heard a rustle above me and looked up to see a flock of beautiful, black birds flying over the yard. They stopped for a moment in one of the trees and then took off again. Almost immediately, another large group flew over, followed by several more flocks. In all, there must have been more than 100 magnificent black birds.
In my groggy state, I wondered for a moment if I’d had a magically real dream – but there was Grimm waiting for me to pick him up to go back inside. I wasn’t dreaming, but I had been mesmerized by a stunning murmuration of starlings heading south.
Later that same day, Jackie Feathers, the little wren that has nested under the back porch roof for nearly 30 years came back to winter with us. Jackie’s arrival every year assures me that there is order in the midst of chaos and makes me glad.
So the seasons change whether we want them to or not; it’s our job to find the magic in each one.
Marian Carcache welcomes
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